Oddities, curiousities and strangness in history [2]

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Post by halfwise Tue Feb 20, 2024 12:32 pm

To me they slid past each other.

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Post by halfwise Sun Apr 28, 2024 5:18 pm

If this reconstruction is accurate the colosseum had very nicely patterned marble floors, which I had never suspected. I don't appreciate the opera with this, it's not appropriate.


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Post by Pettytyrant101 Tue Apr 30, 2024 4:04 am

{{ Opera is never appropriate! Mad (skip to 1.14)}}


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Post by halfwise Thu May 09, 2024 12:39 pm

This is fascinating. And yes, in Europe people DID carry things on their heads.


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Post by halfwise Sat May 11, 2024 3:44 am

There's been some dust-ups about Netflix portraying Cleopatra as a black woman.   I watched the first episode some months ago and thought I had reviewed it but can't find it.  Now I've watched the first two episodes.

For me the only truly annoying part was the intro line by Jada Pinkett Smith: "There was a time when women ruled with unparalleled power...".  Um, no.   If they made it singular it would apply to Cleopatra, but it definitely did not apply to her time.

This is one of the Netflix dramadocs where they have historians jump in to comment, cutting back and forth to dramatized incidents. The lead historian is a black woman who recalls when she was studying Cleopatra in grade school her grandma told her "Whatever they tell you in school, just remember, Cleopatra was black!"  The thing is, I just love this woman to bits.  They used her in the similar docudrama about Ceaser, and she excels at filling out the personalities and interpersonal drama, eyes a-twinkle, relating it like fresh gossip from 2000 years ago.

So when they made Cleopatra black, it feels like something tongue-in-cheek based on that statement.  They never really try to justify the decision, except for some brief discussion about it being possible given the Egyptian ethnic mileau and the three centuries since Alexander.

And I'll forgive them their little fun, because they do bring to light details we normally never hear about Cleopatra; all the intrigues of the years before Caeser arrived and Cleopatra got herself thrust upon the world stage.

So I'd say go ahead and watch it.  It rounds out the story of one of the most interesting characters in history.  They don't put forward the assumption of blackness as anything more than a possibility, and I say let them have their fun so long as the other historical details are correct.  Little girls can dream.

Oddities, curiousities and strangness in history [2] - Page 22 Screen87

"Just remember, Cleopatra was black!"

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Post by azriel Mon May 13, 2024 8:49 pm

Really liked the Colosseum video, I can honestly imagine that and I wouldnt be surprised if it was just like that back in the day, just a bloody shame about Nessun dorma banging on, I guess it was thought a awesome song represents an awesome structure ?

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Post by halfwise Tue May 14, 2024 9:11 pm

So I finished Cleopatra, and quite enjoyed the historical tidbits we never see anywhere else. For example, when Octavian marched on Egypt after the battle of Actium, you'd think he'd carry the troops over by boat. But no, he in fact raised the largest army Rome had ever yet produced, and marched around the Mediterranean subduing any possible Egyptian allies along the way. This definitely proves they had accepted Cleopatra as a badass you didn't take chances with. Some of it was respect for Antony's military experience, but since half the Egyptian fleet during Actium defected to Octavian because they couldn't abide him, I think this weights Octavian's caution more towards respect for Cleopatra's political skills.

I didn't like HBO's version of Cleopatra much. Made her into a bit of a childish minx. The Netflix version points out that Roman male aristocracy likely never met a woman who dealt with them on the level of both social and intellectual equality. It must have been an intoxicating revelation, hence her ability to seduce two of the most powerful generals of Rome. I otherwise loved HBO's Rome, I just wish we had gotten a better version of Cleopatra out of it.

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Post by halfwise Sat Jun 01, 2024 1:34 pm

This vid (which really should show more) shows a massive set of wide steps going up the Acropolis. I've only bee there once decades ago, and remember only a dusty gravel road going up. Looking back on maps I don't see any signs of the steps, and can't even figure out how the gravel road gets up there. It seems a great loss as those steps would be a magnificent entrance.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 Sat Jun 01, 2024 4:43 pm

{{ Either you forgot the vid or I'm even more drunk than usual! }}

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Post by halfwise Sun Jun 02, 2024 2:18 pm

Whoops.


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